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The Source:

anon :
"Satul bantuit"
Ziua, 18 September, 2003

Mihai Gavrila and Ionut Pirvulescu :
"Valea strigoiului"
Gazeta de Sud, 18 September 2003

anon :
"Un strigoi terorizeaza un sat din Oltenia"
Cronica Romana, 19 September, 2003

Florin Baltaretu :
"Moroiul din Valea Stanciului, cautat de politie"
Evenimentul Zilei, 19 September 2003

Florin Baltaretu :
"Moroiul din Valea Stanciului este scolar"
Evenimentul Zilei, 20 September 2003

The Case:

A 53-year-old shepherd named Marin Popa had died and was buried in the village of Valea Stanciului. He had been born with a mark on his head, which meant that he would become a Moroi after his death. He used to drink a lot as well, which seems to have the same effect. So when he died the people from the village were afraid that he would return from the grave. One newspaper mentions that before they buried him they put a stake through his heart. The other one has it that his heart was pierced with a knitting needle which seems more likely. And fires were lit around the grave. The stone on top of it had been secured with beams to keep the shepherd from wandering off.

Sadly all these efforts seemed not enough. At night something came into the houses and threw things around and messed with the food. It also upset the animals. The village priest armed with basil and a cross went around to bless all the houses. I am afraid that I can not tell you if and how this story has ended. But that was yesterday. Today I found another newspaper article that tells us the vampire has been caught. It is a 10-year-old schoolboy who has put the fear of God into the village people. The police are convinced that they have found the person who is responsible for what has happened. But the villagers have their doubts and are still trying to get approval for an exhumation so they can pierce the heart of Marin Popa for a second time.

The Date:

The first newspaper article is dated 18 September 2003. The burial is said to have taken place a few days earlier.

The Place:

Valea Stanciului can be found in Romania, in the district Dolj. Somewhere halfway between Craiova and the Bulgarian border.

Personal Comments:

Once again we find that vampires do not always have to be after your blood or vitality. Sometimes they have other ways to upset the normal village life. The result seems to be the same. For even after the priest had done his blessings, the villagers were all sitting together at night fearing for their life.

Possible Follow-Up:

I have only given you a few of the newspaper articles. There are many many more about this case. There are even pictures. Go find them yourself and read them. Why should I do all the hard work for you ?

2009 by Rob Brautigam - NL - Last changed 19 November 2009
The picture is an old Romanian postcard from my collection

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